We only stayed in Ukraine for one day and just saw a small piece of the country. We promised our families we wouldn’t go to Ukraine so we kept it short. 😛 When reading this, please be aware we only saw one small village of Ukraine so we will have to visit again in the future to be able to tell more about the country. For now this is just our perspective of this small part.
It was a bit of a scary entrance to Ukraine since we are not used to borders in the European Union. The men with large automatic rifles looked at us as if we were either special or suspicious. We crossed the border quite easily except for the waiting-time and only as we left again in the evening they were surprised that we did not have any luggage with us. While going to Solotvyna in Ukraine we first bought some chocolate from a local shop which looked very much like old soviet candy. Of course this brought back fun memories for Nadi from when she was young and they had this type of candy in Slovakia. The next step was to find a place to drink a beer, as this was our original plan for visiting Ukraine. As we found a place we met 3 boys who spoke English very well for their age. They offered to show us around and we ended up walking and talking for 4 hours. We passed seemingly abandoned schools with broken windows which turned out to be active elementary schools. They showed us to the salt lakes, a mayor attraction for the people of this region, which to us did not seem like a great place for holidays. We talked about the war in the east of Ukraine and they explained how they ‘wanted Ukraine just to be Ukraine’. We passed various abandoned railway stations which were left behind after the collapse of the salt mines. On the way back they showed us their home which was not more luxurious than what we had seen before. This visit was very impressive and it really showed how welcoming people can be. To me this was the best contact we have made. We gave them our email address and it would have been great to stay in touch but unfortunately we never received a mail from them.
1. Sighetu Marmației, Romania
2. Solotvyna, Ukraine
3. Solotvyne-Likarnya station
4. Solotvyne Salt lake
|No sleeping||Soviet Chocolate||4 hour walk and talk with 3 Ukrainian boys||Overlooking the collapsed Salt Mine|
Budget – Per Person
Tips and Warnings
If you cross where we crossed, search for a little bar with terrace on the right side of the road, 10 minutes after crossing the border. Have a beer there, maybe say hi to some Ukrainians. Here we met 3 boys who gave us a great tour for 4 hours long.
If you come near them, be careful near the salt mines. This is a recommendation for visit but also a warning, there a giant holes in the ground and it is still unstable. The sides can slide down and you will not be found there.